[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/joss-whedon1.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:"Always be yourself... [[BaitAndSwitchComment unless you suck]]."]]

->''"This is my [[SignatureStyle entire career]] in one scene: Look, [[DamselInDistress shes helpless]]! [[SubvertedTrope No]], [[ActionGirl shes kicking their asses]]!"''
-->-- '''Joss Whedon'''

'''Joseph Hill Whedon''' (born June 23, 1964) is a scriptwriter, director, [[TheCameo cameo]] actor, television producer through his famed MutantEnemy production company, ComicBook author, and -- as of his appearance on ''ThisAmericanLife'' -- a singer. He is best known for his work on ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'', ''Series/{{Angel}}'', ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}'', the [[ScrewedByTheNetwork famously-]][[TheFireflyEffect cancelled]] cult hit ''Series/{{Firefly}}'', [[TheMovie its motion picture]] ''Film/{{Serenity}}'', ''WebVideo/DoctorHorriblesSingAlongBlog'' and ''Film/TheAvengers''. Coming from a family of talented writers, Joss is also notable for often being called one of the first ''third''-generation television writers.

Most of his works include [[ActionGirl badass female characters]], as well as [[WorldOfSnark numerous characters with dry, caustic wit]]. And [[TrueArtIsAngsty angst]]. [[{{Angst}} Lots]] [[DeusAngstMachina and lots]] [[DiabolusExMachina of angst]]. [[AngstDissonance Even in the middle of]] [[CerebusSyndrome comic storylines or situations]].

In fact, Whedon delights in [[SubvertedTrope defying audience expectations]], to the point "{{Jossed}}" became synonymous with fan theories being disproven. For instance, rather than killing a major character, he'll kill off [[MauveShirt a minor but much more endearing character]]. Whedon explained in the DVD commentary for ''Film/{{Serenity}}'' that he likes doing such things because people ''expect'' the hero to die or be horribly injured at some point -- but they don't expect the ''minor'' characters to die, so the impact is much greater! Unfortunately, he's [[SignatureStyle done this so often]] that nobody familiar with Whedon expects characters they like to live anymore.

His {{Website/Twitter}} account may be found [[https://twitter.com/JossWhedon here]].

Not to be confused with Music/JossStone.

[[folder:List of Works]]
[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Television Work: ]]

* [[/folder]]

[[folder: As Creator / Executive Producer / Director: ]]

** ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' series
** ''Series/{{Angel}}''
** ''Series/{{Firefly}}''
** ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}''
** ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD''

* [[/folder]]

[[folder: As Writer / Guest Writer: ]]

** ''Series/{{Roseanne}}''
** ''Series/{{Parenthood}}'' (1990 version)

* [[/folder]]

[[folder: As Director: ]]

** ''Series/TheOffice'' ("Business School" and "Branch Wars")
** ''Series/{{Glee}}'' ("Dream On")

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Films written: ]]

* ''Film/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' film
* ''Film/{{Speed}}'' (script doctor)
* ''Film/{{Waterworld}}'' (original draft, which was mangled beyond recognition)
* ''Film/{{Twister}}'' (script doctor)
* ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'' (co-writer)
* ''Film/AlienResurrection''
* ''Film/TitanAE'' (the draft that the final version was mostly based on)
* ''AtlantisTheLostEmpire'' (early script)
* ''Film/XMen1'' (script doctor)
* ''Film/{{Serenity}}''
* ''Film/TheCabinInTheWoods'' (co-writer)
* ''Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger'' (additional material, uncredited)
* ''Film/TheAvengers''
* ''Film/ThorTheDarkWorld'' (additional material, uncredited)
* ''Film/InYourEyes''
* ''Film/TheAvengersAgeOfUltron''

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Films directed: ]]

* ''Film/{{Serenity}}''
* ''Film/TheAvengers''
* ''Theatre/MuchAdoAboutNothing''
* ''Film/TheAvengersAgeOfUltron''

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Films Produced: ]]

* ''Film/TheCabinInTheWoods''
* ''Theatre/MuchAdoAboutNothing''
* ''Film/InYourEyes''

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Comics written: ]]

* ''ComicBook/{{Runaways}}''
* ''ComicBook/BuffyTheVampireSlayer: Season Eight'' and ''Season Nine''.
* ''[[Series/{{Angel}} Angel: After The Fall]]''
* ''Comicbook/AstonishingXMen''
* ''ComicBook/{{Fray}}''
* ''Film/{{Serenity}}''

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Original projects: ]]

* [[WebVideo/DoctorHorriblesSingAlongBlog Doctor Horrible's Sing-Along Blog]]
* "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6TiXUF9xbTo Whedon on Romney]]"
[[/folder]]
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!!TropeNamer for:
* AppliedPhlebotinum
* {{Jossed}}

!!This creator and his works contain examples of:
* AbusiveParents / ParentalAbandonment: A staple of the Jossverse, sometimes lampooned. For the Freudians out there, Joss' parents split before he turned 10. Though he does speak well of both his father and stepfather, saying both helped shape his feminist views.
** Amusingly, by season 3 of ''{{Angel}}'' this reached the point where the fact that Fred's parents were perfectly nice people came off as a shocking twist.
* ActionGirl: Though Whedon himself doesn't think this should even be a trope. He once recounted how interviewers always ask why he writes so many strong, competent female characters, saying he always wants to yell at them about why they aren't asking every other writer why they ''don't'' write these kinds of characters. Instead of viewing a character as a woman who does "action-y" things, view it as a character who does "action-y" things who happens to be a woman.
* AnyoneCanDie: Villians, heroes, children, the main character, ''anyone'' can die in a Joss Whedon production.
** ''Buffy'' / ''Angel'': [[spoiler:Jesse, Jenny Calendar, Doyle, Tara, Anya, Joyce, Lilah (sorta), Cordelia, Fred, Wesley, Lindsey, Spike, Angel, and Buffy herself, twice. Giles as well as of the Season 8 comics.]]
** ''Firefly'' / ''Serenity'': [[spoiler:Shepherd Book, Wash.]]
** ''Dollhouse'': [[spoiler:Topher Brink, Boyd Langton, Paul Ballard, Mellie!November, Bennett Halverson, and possibly the majority of the cast considering the {{Distant Finale}}s, particularly Mr. Dominic and Ivy]].
** ''Dr. Horrible'': [[spoiler:Penny.]]
** ''TitanAE'': [[spoiler:Korso, Preed, and Cale's father.]]
** ''Film/TheAvengers'': [[spoiler:Agent Coulson.]]
*** When ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD'' star Brett Dalton met with the writers for a meeting regarding [[spoiler: Ward's FaceHeelTurn]], he thought he was going to be told that they were killing him off.
** ''ComicBook/AstonishingXMen'': [[spoiler:Kitty Pryde.]]
** ''Film/TheCabinInTheWoods'': [[spoiler:[[KillEmAll Every last member of the cast and then the entire planet.]]]]
* {{Atheism}}: Whedon is rather hardline about this, but on the other hand, he ''is'' capable of writing religious characters without letting his own beliefs influence him.
** Steve "ComicBook/CaptainAmerica" Rogers in ''The Avengers'' states his belief that "There's only one God", but that's pretty much the ''only'' thing the other Avengers don't make fun of him for.
*** Though he also admits that Hulk's "Puny god" moment was more fun than it should have been for him to make.
** [[{{Series/Firefly}} Shepherd Book]] is a friendly, open-minded Christian as well as a deep, well-rounded character.
* AuthorAppeal:
** Likes characters with English accents, as he attended school in Britain (The Watchers, Spike, Adelle, Badger, Simmons).
** People with mental illness shows up in a lot of his shows.
** People walking around barefoot.
** ElvisCostello references.
** [[YuriFan Tends to turn]] [[LesYay his female characters into]] [[SchoolgirlLesbians lesbians]], if they weren't already.
** Likes to name his characters after objects (Willow, River, Spike, Faith, Book, Skye).
** [[MutantDraftBoard Mysterious organizations who recruit people with special talent]] (The Watchers Council, Blue Suns, The Academy, Wolfram & Hart, SHIELD and SWORD, The Evil League of Evil).
** [[DeadpanSnarker Snarkiness]].
* BadNewsInAGoodWay: He enjoys excitedly announcing to his actors that he's killed them.
* {{Badass}}: Many kinds of badass.
** BadassAdorable: Willow, Fred, Kaylee, Kitty Pryde.
** BadassNormal: Xander, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Coulson
** BadassLongcoat: Angel, Spike, Mal, Nick Fury
** BadassBookworm: Wesley, Willow, Giles, Simon, Shepard Book
** CulturedBadass: Inara Serra, Rupert Giles, Wesley
** LittleMissBadass: River, Buffy, the Slayer Army, Echo
** BadassCrew: Crew of ''Serenity'', the Scooby Gang, Team Angel, The Avengers
** BadassPreacher: They call him a shepherd, but that's what Book is.
* BetterThanABareBulb: The source of much Whedon comedy.
* BrainwashedAndCrazy: River, Drusilla, Alpha, Hawkeye.
* BuffySpeak: While he didn't invent it, Joss and his shows had a big hand in changing the way TV and movie characters talk, especially white teenagers. This isn't because he likes it so much as [[WriteWhoYouKnow it's how he speaks]].
* BuryYourGays: Joss actually likes having same-sex couples who are in happy, stable relationships. But since he also thinks TrueLoveIsBoring, this eventually leads to him killing one or both members of the couple for the sake of drama. Note that [[AnyoneCanDie he does this to heterosexual couples too.]]
* CastTheExpert: The casting of ballet dancer SummerGlau in an episode of ''Angel'' and hiring Tony Award-winning Hinton Battle as a choreographer and as the dancing demon Sweet in ''Buffy'''s [[MusicalEpisode "Once More With Feeling."]]
* {{Chiaroscuro}}: The man adores negative space.
* TheCameo:
** Guest starred as a sports agent in Creator/{{Jane Espenson}}'s web series ''Husbands''.
** Appeared in an episode of [[Creator/FeliciaDay Geek & Sundry's]] ''Written By A Kid''.
** Douglas the car rental office boss in the ''Series/VeronicaMars'' episode "Rat Saw God".
* CreatorCameo: He has self-inserted himself into a number of his own works, including:
** Lorne's brother Numfar in ''Series/{{Angel}}''
-->"Numfar! Do the dance of joy!"
** The ''Buffy'' comics line.
** [[DeathByCameo The interviewer]] in [[Film/{{Serenity}} The R. Tam Sessions]].
** One of the singing cowboys in ''Dr. Horrible''.
* CuteBruiser: A number of his {{Action Girl}}s also have SuperStrength, including [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Buffy]], [[Series/{{Angel}} Cordelia]] and Fred.
* DeadpanSnarker: Has a very dry wit.
** Take his political [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6TiXUF9xbTo "endorsement"]] in the 2012 Presidential Election, for example.
** He would often [[http://www.comicbookmovie.com/fansites/GraphicCity/news/?a=79191 take false rumors]] with gigantic heaps of sarcasm in stride.
* DeusAngstMachina[=/=]DiabolusExMachina: Usually combined with TooHappyToLive below.
* DoesNotLikeShoes: While not as egregious as Creator/QuentinTarantino in that regard, Whedon often shows female protagonists barefoot, from [[Series/{{Firefly}} River]] to [[Film/{{Avengers}} Pepper and Natasha]]. Occasionally justified by having said characters using [[SheFu martial arts or other acrobatic maneuvers]].
* DroppedABridgeOnHim: Though he's always had a reputation for using AnyoneCanDie, he's been accused of relying on it a bit too much, killing characters off just for cheap shock value long after we've learned to suspect it's coming.
* DystopiaJustifiesTheMeans: Once jokingly asked Americans to vote for Mitt Romney in order to bring about an [[RuleOfCool awesome]] ZombieApocalypse.
* FamilyBusiness: [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Whedon Members]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Whedon of]] the Whedon family have been writing for television practically since the medium's inception, and then, of course, there are his brothers.
** And now, Pepper.
* ForeignCussWord: A staple of his productions. Examples include Spike dropping a British cuss words on ''Buffy'', the ''Serenity'' crew swearing in Mandarin, and Loki calling Black Widow a "[[CountryMatters mewling quim]]" in ''Film/TheAvengers''.
* HollywoodAtheist: Malcolm Reynolds is deeply bitter against God/Christianity after losing a war. NathanFillion himself stated that Mal is actually a {{Naytheist}} who's pissed off after the Serenity Valley.
** Whedon himself is an interesting case. He says he can't bring himself to believe in a god, but he's actually very bothered by that.
* ICallItVera: "MutantEnemy" was originally the name of his typewriter in school.
* {{Irony}}: He [[DoesNotLikeGuns really doesn't like guns,]] but is frequently waist-high in them due to the kinds of shows and movies he does.
* KillEmAll: Discussed in [[http://screenrant.com/joss-whedon-avengers-2-nolan-dc-movies-characters/ one of his interviews]]. Whether he's joking or not is ambiguous, considering his reputation for killing off beloved characters.
-->'''Whedon''': The idea of doing [Film/TheAvengers] three times just staggers the imagination. Im not that young. But then, I hadnt really intended to do a second one. In the third one, I really am going to kill everyone.
** Given the plotline of Avengers 3 is likely to be the infinity gauntlet, he probably isn't joking either.
* KillTheCutie: Joss Whedon is a sick, sick man.
* LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters: On his commentary for ''The Avengers'', he laments that both feature films he's directed suffer from this problem, meaning a few will inevitably not get the focus they deserve.
* MoodWhiplash: Many heartwarming scenes and jokes in Whedon works are followed by a character being unexpectedly and often brutally murdered seconds late and many a very dramatic scene will be punctuated with a joke.
* OldShame:
** The unaired ''Buffy'' pilot. It's on Youtube if anyone's interested. Also, the film.
--->'''IGNFF''': Is the presentation ever going to make it to DVD?\\
'''Whedon''': Not while there is strength in these bones.\\
'''IGNFF''': Well, I mean, it's one of the most heavily bootlegged things on the Internet.\\
'''Whedon''': Yeah. It sucks on ass.\\
'''IGNFF''': Yeah, it does, but it's sort of that archival, historical perspective...\\
'''Whedon''': Yeah, [[IWillShowYouX I've got your historical perspective]].
** ''Film/AlienResurrection'', which was supposedly [[PoesLaw written as a parody]]. Needless the say, the irony blew up in his face -- and not for the last time, either. "[[Film/XMen1 The same thing that happens to everything else]]", indeed.
** Joss doesn't have fond memories of ''{{Roseanne}}''. The eponymous star was apparently on [[ThePrimadonna her worst behavior]], and the whole crew bore the brunt of it.
** He's hinted that he's done a bit more uncredited script edits than anyone is aware of, which turned out so badly that it's going to stay that way.
* ProductionPosse: Some actors achieved a "hat trick" of appearing as [[YouLookFamiliar different characters]] in three of his series. The most notable of these actors is JonathanMWoodward. Not only did Woodward appear in three of Whedon's shows (Holden Webster in ''Buffy''; Knox in ''Angel'' and Tracy in ''Firefly''), his character [[ChronicallyKilledActor died in each instance.]]
** For a longer list, see MutantEnemy.
** Carlos Jacott, best known for [[spoiler:shooting Bill Henrickson]] in the finale of ''Series/BigLove'', played the smarmy villain Ken in the ''Buffy'' episode "Anne". He would later appear on ''Angel'' ("Bachelor Party") and ''Firefly'' ("Serenity").
** Creator/AmyAcker (''Angel'') and Alan Tudyk (''Firefly'') both resurfaced on ''Dollhouse'' after the demise of their respective shows. The former would later be cast in ''Film/TheCabinInTheWoods'', Whedon's ''MuchAdoAboutNothing'' and ''Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.''
** Creator/AdamBaldwin and GinaTorres were salvaged from ''Firefly'' to play villains on ''Angel''. Creator/MorenaBaccarin was slated to appear (also as a baddie), but Fox execs [[ExecutiveVeto nixed the idea]]. And, of course, NathanFillion was a recurring villain in ''Buffy'''s last season.
*** Additionally, if one wanted to play Six Degrees of Adam Baldwin, he also appeared on TimMinear's short-lived thriller ''The Inside''.
** AlexisDenisof is a frequent collaborator. In addition to playing Wesley on ''Series/{{Buffy|the Vampire Slayer}}'' and ''Series/{{Angel}}'' and Senator Daniel Perrin in ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}'', he had a surprise voiceover in ''Film/TheAvengers'' as The Other, and is Benedick in Whedon's ''MuchAdoAboutNothing''.
** Creator/JeremyRenner, who plays {{Hawkeye}} in ''The Avengers'', played a baddie on ''Angel'' way back in 2000.
** Gnarl, one of The Gentleman, the Ubervamp, and the Prince of Lies were all the same guy: Camden Toy.
** Andy Umberger was D'Hoffryn on ''Buffy'', a crazy psychosurgeon on ''Angel'', and an Alliance Captain in the ''Firefly'' pilot.
** EnverGjokaj - Victor in ''Dollhouse'' - had a cameo in ''Film/TheAvengers'' as a police officer.
** Drew Goddard, director and co-writer of ''Film/TheCabinInTheWoods''. He previously worked as a writer for ''Buffy'' and ''Angel'' and had a {{cameo}} in ''DrHorriblesSingAlongBlog'' as a member of The Evil League of Evil.
** TimMinear, who worked on series such as ''Angel'', ''Firefly'', and ''Dollhouse'' as well as being the creator of ''Series/{{Drive}}'' which starred NathanFillion.
** Creator/JaneEspenson, who wrote for ''Buffy'' (including the comics), ''Angel'', and ''Firefly''. Joss made a {{cameo}} in her series ''Husbands''.
** Creator/NathanFillion, Mal in ''Firefly'', Caleb in Season 7 of ''Buffy'' and Captain Hammer in ''Dr. Horrible''
* PutOnABus: Numerous characters, but most notably [[spoiler: Kitty Pryde]] during his run on ''Astonishing X-Men''. Particularly shocking, considering how much he loved the character ([[spoiler:she's often cited as an inspiration for Buffy]]). [[ComicBookDeath Obviously, another writer undid it]]. But still...
* ScrewedByTheNetwork: To many the TropeCodifier, after how Fox under-supported and then cancelled ''Firefly''.
** His earlier scuffles with the WB, too.
* ShinyNewAustralia: Aside from ''WebVideo/DoctorHorriblesSingAlongBlog'' being the TropeNamer, in the documentary ''Comic Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope'', he comments:
-->'''Whedon:''' When people say the geeks have inherited the Earth, I say (...) "How much of the Earth do I get? Can I have Australia?"
* StarCrossedLovers: If a relationship in one of Whedon's shows isn't unrequited or otherwise troubled, chances are it's doomed to end badly. Joss Whedon hates happy relationships.
* StrawMisogynist: Includes at least one in each of his television shows. They all suffer [[LaserGuidedKarma violent deaths]] at the hands of [[ActionGirl women]].
* StuffedInTheFridge: Any time he kills a character, their loved one will inevitably walk in on the corpse soon after to [[DeusAngstMachina amp up the angst]].
* TooHappyToLive: Whedon regularly kills happy characters, or destroys their lives, or ruins their relationships.
* TookTheBadFilmSeriously: He wrote ''Alien Resurrection'' as a satirical parody, in an attempt to get fired from the job. The studio executives instead thought the script would make a ''[[SpringTimeForHitler perfect]]'' action / horror film. [[invoked]]
* TrollingCreator: Regularly [[KillTheCutie kills]] or [[BreakTheCutie emotionally tortures]] sweet lovable characters in his works. Also regularly lampshaded for laughs.
-->'''Creator/NeilPatrickHarris:''' You do kill a lot of women.\\
'''Joss Whedon:''' Hey, [[CrowningMomentOfFunny my personal life is not on trial here]].
* TrueLoveIsBoring: Every time Joss writes a happy, stable couple, he proceeds to kill one or both of them to make things more interesting.
* WaifFu: He's very fond of tiny {{Action Girl}}s kicking the asses of big, burly men, as seen with [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Buffy]], [[Film/{{Serenity}} River]] and to a lesser extent [[Film/TheAvengers Black Widow]].
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: A particularly potent one, for comic books fans and companies alike: before he was attached to ''Film/TheAvengers'', Whedon was writing a ''WonderWoman'' movie for [=DC=]. [=DC=] passed on it, he got the Avengers job from Kevin Feige, and the rest is history. Imagine how much [=DC=] must be kicking themselves.
* WorldOfSnark: Due to all his characters being exceptionally GenreSavvy, they tend to all be {{Deadpan Snarker}}s too.
-->'''Joss Whedon:''' Everyone has such a dry wit in [[Film/TheAvengers this movie]]. It's like a desert of wit.
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